Lessons in Global Security – Part 1

April 23, 2015

US Army War College Press logo

In this two-part blog post, Government Book Talk takes an in-depth look at several new publications from the U.S. Army War College. (Permission granted for use of United States Army War College Press logo)

The U.S. Army War College, Strategic Studies Institute (SSI) recently has published a few very timely monographs with a primary focus on U.S. national security, public policy and international relations topics.

The Strategic Studies Institute conducts strategic research and analysis to support the U.S. Army War College curricula, provides direct analysis for Army and Department of Defense leadership, and serves as a bridge to the wider strategic community.

SSI is composed of civilian research professors, uniformed military officers, and a professional support staff. All have extensive credentials and experience. SSI is divided into three components: the Strategic Research and Analysis Department focuses on global, trans-regional, and functional issues, particularly those dealing with Army transformation; the Regional Strategy Department focuses on regional strategic issues; and the Academic Engagement Program creates and sustains partnerships with the global strategic community.

In addition to its organic resources, SSI has a web of partnerships with strategic analysts around the world, including the foremost thinkers in the field of security and military strategy. In most years, about half of SSI’s publications are written by these external partners.

Some of my personal favorites from SSI’s growing collection include the following titles:

Reviewing the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT). 9781584874447The Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty and IAEA have had frequent mention in the mainstream news media recently due to ongoing nuclear weapon development discussions with Iran, as well as increased tensions with the Soviet Union.

This book reviews the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) agreements that the United States has with many countries from an historical perspective. Although a bit technical in nature, this work does include an array of essays by different contributors that analyze different articles of the Nuclear Nonproliferation treaty and provide their insights to the reader.

treaty image

(Treaty image courtesy of http://www.state.gov/s/l/treaty/)

One area that was very beneficial to me is that this work defines the responsibilities of the International Atomic Emergency Agency (IAEA) and their practices for safeguarding nuclear programs, including coverage of nuclear program inspections. This book also contains insights about nuclear weapons treaties with other countries that are already in place with the USA and provides some background to those treaties. Additionally, this text explores how treaty agreements work, mentioning “Articles” within the treaty that often pertain to terms of conditions that each country should abide.

Many political scientists, historians, and diplomats may be familiar with this process, but many American citizens who are not routinely involved in negotiations with these diplomatic matters might benefit. Also high school students may be interested in this material to stay on top of current events for their global studies classes. University and Graduate students might be interested in this material as a supplemental text for courses, such as international relations coursework required for some political science degree programs.

Moving Beyond Pretense: Nuclear Power and Nonproliferation008-000-01098-6. This monograph focuses on the making of nuclear fuel– a process that is expensive and complex. The first section of this book features “Nuclear Proliferation Matters,” which covers the argument that nuclear weapons proliferation is more likely to occur with the spread of civilian nuclear technology and that such nuclear proliferation constitutes a threat to international security—certainly if there is nuclear weapons use, but even if there is not.

The volume’s second section, “Nuclear Power, Nuclear Weapons—Clarifying the Links,” makes the case that civilian nuclear power programs actually afford a major leg up for any nation seeking development of a nuclear weapons option.

The third section of this work covers the discussion on “How Well Can We Safeguard the Peaceful Atom?” and the question of how well the IAEA and the United Nations (UN) are likely to do their job enforcing the NPT in the future.

Each chapter within this text has a different contributor to the point of view, but the overall themes are maintained. Plus, some chapters include an analysis of specific Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty Articles which are helpful to make their discussion points understood. Some of the contributors’ discussions indicate that the past historical events worked well in policy, but the implementations and enforcements of the policies seemed to be more troublesome.

Additionally, within each section, historical events relating to these discussions are presented to the reader to point out a sense of initiatives that will be needed to strengthen the monitoring for greater security.

This guide helped me to better understand the intense negotiations that the U.S. foreign diplomats and ambassadors in foreign countries must engage in with our allies and other countries to achieve the end result of greater global security.

European Missile Defense and Russia008-000-01109-5. This monograph provides the historical perspective that began with fear around the time of World War II and continued through the 1950s to 1960s regarding Russia’s expansion of their missile defense and nuclear weapons programs. This book also mentions and focuses discussions around the Ballistic Missile Defense Treaty and the Anti-Ballistic Missile Defense Program Treaty between the U.S. and U.S.S.R. (Russia).

Russian flag

Russian Flag

During the late 1990s, the United States became aware that Russia had started to sell some of its missile defense weapons to rogue states within the Middle East. These countries created another possible harm to the United States, rather than a direct attack from Russia. As a result, the U.S. began implementing missile warhead interceptors as part of their long-term defense plan.

The primary focus within the pages of this book is about America’s expansion plan to build missile defense sites in select European and Asian countries to aid in our national defense strategy and Russia’s adversarial challenges to this U.S. strategic plot. The authors have included primary source excerpts from actual conversations and speeches between world leaders that add to each of their points of discussion throughout this work.

(Images are copyright-free from copyright-free-images.com)

(Image of flag and this missile are courtesy of copyright-free-images.com)

Again, the U.S. Army War College’s Strategic Studies Institute has released a title with historical perspectives that can shed insights into today’s current events concerning U.S. and Russia missile defense program relations.

Undergraduate and graduate political science classes with a focus on comparative politics and U.S.-Russian relations may have interest in this book as a supplemental reading text or reference for research.

How can I get these new SSI publications?

Shop Online Anytime: You can buy the following  publications (with FREE Standard Shipping worldwide) from the U.S. Government Online Bookstore website at http://bookstore.gpo.gov:

Order by Phone: You may also Order print editions by calling our Customer Contact Center Monday through Friday, 8 am to 5:30 pm Eastern (except US Federal holidays). From US and Canada, call toll-free 1.866.512.1800. DC or International customers call +1.202.512.1800.

Shop our Retail Store: Buy a copy of any print editions from this collection at GPO’s retail bookstore at 710 North Capitol Street NW, Washington, DC 20401, open Monday–Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., except Federal holidays, Call (202) 512-0132 for information or to arrange in-store pick-up.

Visit a Federal depository library: Search for U.S. Government publications in a nearby Federal depository library. You can find the records for most titles in GPO’s Catalog of U.S. Government Publications.

About the author: This week’s blog contributor is Maureen Whelan, Senior Marketing Team Leader for GPO’s Publication and Information Sales program office in Washington, DC. Maureen oversees print and digital content dissemination strategy and manages third party free and paid content distribution through platforms and vendors, such as Apple iBookstore, Barnes and Noble.com, Google Play eBookstore, Ebscohost databases, Overdrive, and more.

 


Government Publications Focus on American Agriculture

April 15, 2015

grange logoApril is National Grange Month, honoring one of the Nation’s oldest and most respected farmers’ organizations. According to its website, “The National Grange, founded in 1867, is a nonprofit, nonpartisan, fraternal organization that advocates for rural America and agriculture. With a strong history in grassroots activism, family values and community service, the Grange is part of more than 2,100 hometowns across the United States.” To help recognize the Grange’s contribution to rural America, Government Book talk is featuring the following publications focusing on American agriculture.

Profitable Farms and Woodlands: A Practical Guide in Agroforestry for 001-001-00694-7Landowners, Farmers and Ranchers. This practical handbook on agroforestry is organized in an easy to read format written for underserved and limited resource farmers and woodland owners living in the Southeastern U.S. It depicts step-by-step methods and principles on developing agroforestry practices for farmers and woodland owners for the purpose of enhancing the economic and environmental benefits of their farms and woodlands. Topics on agroforestry practices covered in this publication are Alley Cropping; Forest Farming; Riparian Buffer Strips; Silvopasture; and Windbreaks. This handbook will assist farmers and woodland owners establish, manage and market agroforestry projects that are diverse, integrated, profitable, healthy and sustainable.

001-000-04762-1Agricultural Statistics 2013 Agricultural Statistics is published each year to meet the diverse need for a reliable reference book on agricultural production, supplies, consumption, facilities, costs, and returns. Its tables of annual data cover a wide variety of facts in forms suited to most common use. Extensive table data include statistics of the following:
• Statistics of Grain and Feed
• Cotton, Tobacco, Sugar Crops, and Honey
• Oilseeds, Fats, and Oils
• Vegetables and Melons
• Hay, Seeds, and Minor Field Crops
• Cattle, Hogs, and Sheep
• Dairy and Poultry
• Insurance, Credit & Cooperatives
• Agricultural Conservation & Forestry
• Consumption & Family Living
• Fertilizers & Pesticides
• Miscellaneous Agricultural Statistics such as Foreign Agricultural Trade Statistics including exports, fisheries and more.

001-000-04759-1Why Would Anyone Cut a Tree Down? This delightful book shows children the life cycle of trees, showing that trees are a renewable resource as their seeds can be planted to make new trees grow. It also discusses the need to remove sick, flammable and other dangerous trees as well as the various uses for wood from cut trees. All of it is so beautifully illustrated in full color that the lessons come alive for adults and children alike.

How can I get these or other agriculture publications?

Shop Online Anytime: You can buy the following  publications (with FREE Standard Shipping worldwide) from the U.S. Government Online Bookstore website at http://bookstore.gpo.gov:

Order by Phone: You may also Order print editions by calling our Customer Contact Center Monday through Friday, 8 am to 5:30 pm Eastern (except US Federal holidays). From US and Canada, call toll-free 1.866.512.1800. DC or International customers call +1.202.512.1800.

Shop our Retail Store: Buy a copy of any print editions from this collection at GPO’s retail bookstore at 710 North Capitol Street NW, Washington, DC 20401, open Monday–Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., except Federal holidays, Call (202) 512-0132 for information or to arrange in-store pick-up.

Visit a Federal depository library: Search for U.S. Government publications in a nearby Federal depository library. You can find the records for most titles in GPO’s Catalog of U.S. Government Publications.

About the author: Trudy Hawkins is Senior Marketing and Promotions Specialist in GPO’s Publication & Information Sales Division supporting the U.S. Government Online Bookstore (http://bookstore.gpo.gov).


Celebrate Doctors Day – March 30th with Publications for the Physician produced by the US Federal Government

March 30, 2015

doctors dayThe United States Federal Government produces a broad array of topical medical-related publications that may appeal to the physicians — primary care, chiropractors, pediatricians, surgeons, elder care physicians, gynecologists, physical and occupational therapists. This blog showcases a few publications that may appeal to these medical-focused professionals serving patients of all ages that may have a variety of ailments.

Observation-Based Posture Assessment Review of Current Practice and Recommendations for ImprovementThe chiropractor or physical/occupational therapist may be interested in the Center for Disease Control’s report: Observation-Based Posture Assessment: Review of Current Practice and Recommendations for Improvement can be used to help practitioners assess postural stress of the trunk and upper limbs in a workplace environment.

Parent’s Guide to Childhood ImmunizationsFor pediatricians advising parents of children about vaccinations and immunizations, the Parent’s Guide to Childhood Immunizations (Packages of 10) is an economical way for doctors, especially pediatricians, and pediatric specialists to provide guidance in plain language to parents and caregivers of school-aged children.

(Photo compliments of safe surrender.org from Google Images download)

(Photo compliments of safe surrender.org from Google Images download)

Pediatric Surgery and Medicine for Hostile EnvironmentsPediatric Surgery and Medicine for Hostile Environments may provide a helpful reference in a trauma crisis impacting a child that may be suitable for emergency room doctors, staff, and critical pediatric surgeons s faced with handling gun shot or bomb explosive wounds in children.

Emergency Surgery, 4th US RevisionEmergency Surgery, 4th US Revision covers trauma surgeries, including head, face, neck, and eye injuries, to difficulties with airway breathing, amputations, abdominal injuries, infections, gynecological injuries and emergency pediatric medical care that may be impacted by a war situation, terrorist attack aftermath, earthquake, or other accidental disaster.   This title is available in print and eBook formats.

Pocket Guide to Staying Healthy at 50+Primary care physicians, especially those that have senior citizens as patients, will want to make sure that they have these resources on hand: Pocket Guide to Staying Healthy at 50+ provides guidance on immunizations, living habits, and screening tests this age group should follow to stay healthy.

Long-Term Care Services in the United States 2013 OverviewLong-Term Care Services in the United States 2013 Overview provides data on services including residents of nursing homes, residential communities, patients of home health care agencies, hospices, and participants in adult day care.

All physicians will want to have these resources available in their professional library:

Health Insurance Claims Forms (SMS-1500)Health Insurance Claims Forms (SMS-1500) -2 part snap-out package – this essential form is used to bill Medicare carriers and medical equipment durable regional carriers when a provider qualifies for a waiver from the Administrative Compliance Simplification Act (ACSA)and can also be used for billing some Medicaid State agencies.

Health Care Act (Public Laws 111-152 and 111-148)Health Care Act (Public Laws 111-152 and 111-148) is the primary, full-text and authoritative source on the “ins and outs” of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act commonly referred to as “Obamacare” or “Obama Care.”

How can I get these publications?

Shop Online: You can purchase these publications from the U.S. Government Online Bookstore at http://bookstore.gpo.gov by clicking on the title links above in this blog post.

Order by Phone: Call our Customer Contact Center Monday through Friday, 8 am to 5:30 pm Eastern (except US Federal holidays). From US and Canada, call toll-free 1.866.512.1800. DC or International customers call +1.202.512.1800.

Shop our Retail Store: Buy a copy of any print editions from this collection at GPO’s retail bookstore at 710 North Capitol Street NW, Washington, DC 20401, open Monday–Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., except Federal holidays, Call (202) 512-0132 for information or to arrange in-store pick-up.

Visit a Federal Depository Library: Search for one of these publications in a nearby Federal depository library.

About the author: This week’s blog contributor is Maureen Whelan, Senior Marketing Team Leader for GPO’s Publication and Information Sales program office in Washington, DC. Maureen oversees print and digital content dissemination strategy and manages third party free and paid content distribution through platforms and vendors, such as Apple iBookstore, Barnes and Noble.com, Google Play eBookstore, Ebscohost databases, Overdrive, and more.


Celebrating National Women’s History Month

March 19, 2015

we can do itMarch is National Women’s History Month, and many Federal agencies are paying tribute to the many generations of women who have made invaluable contributions to our society. According to the Law Library of Congress’ guide to the legislative history of Women’s History Month, “Women’s History Month had its origins as a national celebration in 1981 when Congress passed Public Law 97-28 which authorized and requested the President to proclaim the week beginning March 7, 1982 as ‘Women’s History Week.’ Throughout the next five years, Congress continued to pass joint resolutions designating a week in March as ‘Women’s History Week.’ In 1987, after being petitioned by the National Women’s History Project, Congress passed Public Law 100-9 which designated the month of March 1987 as ‘Women’s History Month.’ Between 1988 and 1994, Congress passed additional resolutions requesting and authorizing the President to proclaim March of each year as Women’s History Month. Since 1995, Presidents Clinton, Bush and Obama have issued a series of annual proclamations designating the month of March as ‘Women’s History Month.”

National Woman’s Day (NWD) has been observed  since the early 1900's.

National Woman’s Day (NWD) has been observed since the early 1900s.

The Library of Congress and other agencies offer many rich collections related to Women’s History Month. You can view a list here.

Also a great resource on the topic of women’s history is the National Women’s History project. According to their site, this organization “recognizes and celebrates the diverse and historic accomplishments of women by providing informational services and educational and promotional materials.” The theme this year from the National Women’s History Project is Weaving the Stories of Women’s Lives. You can read about their 2015 honorees here.

A new publication from the National Defense University ties in well with this theme. Titled “Women on the Frontlines of Peace and Security,” this book includes a foreword by Hillary Rodham Clinton and Leon Panetta. The basic premise is clear: if we hope to prevent conflict and promote peace, we must empower women as full partners. Half of the world’s population are women and yet the decisions affecting women—economics, security, government structure, education, employment, war, and peace are often systematically being made without women’s representation.

008-046-00285-1193In this publication, experts from human rights activists, developmental professionals, and military leaders, share the importance of bringing together the diverse voices of these under-represented women. And while the focus is on the frontlines of military and civil conflict, the stories and case studies indeed weave the stories of women’s lives in readable and well-documented summaries. Included in the volume are numerous photographs of women participating in the governing, protecting, and policing in their homelands or as part of peacekeeping forces. The photographs are an important part of the message of this book, showing women in positions of authority and providing security and protection.

The discussions are broken into five categories:

  • Integrating Women into US Defense and Foreign Policy
  • Women and Conflict Prevention
  • Women s Equal Participants in Conflict Resolution
  • Protections for Women During and After Conflict
  • Women’s Equal Access to the Means for Recovery

The goal of the book is to continue the dialogue on the importance of including women in security and development of international peace. By continuing to govern and make decisions with half the population excluded or ignored, security risks are greatly increased and sense of community and opportunities for peace are even more decreased. It’s a great read with a great collection of historic photographs.

The U.S. Government Bookstore offers an entire collection of publications focused on women’s issues and women’s history. Check it out here.

There are also resources available on the topic from GPO’s Catalog of U.S. Government Publications (CGP). Here are just a few examples.

For an interesting insight into the history of women in the U.S. Government Publishing Office’s workforce, check out these two new webcasts, “Women in the GPO Workforce – GPO’s Women’s History Month (2015),” presented by GPO’s Agency Historian, George Barnum.

For access to great publications from the U.S. Government:

  • Order by Phone: You may also order print editions by calling our Customer Contact Center Monday through Friday, 8 am to 5:30 pm Eastern (except US Federal holidays). From US and Canada, call toll-free 1.866.512.1800. DC or International customers call +1.202.512.1800.
  • Shop our Retail Store: Buy a copy of any print editions from this collection at GPO’s retail bookstore at 710 North Capitol Street NW, Washington, DC 20401, open Monday–Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., except Federal holidays, Call (202) 512-0132 for information or to arrange in-store pick-up.
  • Visit a Federal depository library: Search for U.S. Government publications in a nearby Federal depository library. You can find the records for most titles in GPO’s Catalog of U.S. Government Publications.

About the authors: Robin Haun-Mohamed is the Chief of Outreach and Support in GPO’s Library Services & Content Management division. Kelly Seifert is the Lead Planning Specialist in GPO’s Library Services & Content Management division.


Now Available: Scientific Report of the 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee

March 4, 2015
(Image source nationalnutritionmonth.org)

(nationalnutritionmonth.org)

March is National Nutrition Month, a great time to focus on the importance of developing good eating habits. To coincide with this important event about maintaining a healthy diet, the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee has just released its 2015 scientific report. The report which includes recommendations that will eventually be incorporated into the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2015 provides new changes, in contrast to previous guidelines. For instance, until now, overconsumption of cholesterol was long considered to be bad for the American diet. However, according to the recommendations outlined in the new report, cholesterol is no longer “a nutrient of concern.” To read more about this and other eye opening revelations contained in the report, which is now available through the DietaryGuidelines.gov website, see information below.

From HHS Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion (ODPHP)

Get Involved: The “Scientific Report of the 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee” (Advisory Report) is now open for public review and comment. An official announcement will also publish in the Federal Register. To read the Advisory Report and submit your comments, visit DietaryGuidelines.gov.

Advisory Report: An advisory committee of independent experts – the 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee (or Committee) – has submitted its report to the Secretaries of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and Agriculture (USDA). The “Scientific Report of the 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee” describes findings from the Committee’s review of the scientific evidence on diet, nutrition, and health, and will help inform the next edition of the Dietary Guidelines.

Upcoming Public Meeting: HHS and USDA will host a public meeting at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland on Tuesday, March 24, 2015 to receive public oral comments on the “Scientific Report of the 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee.” Meeting registration for in-person and webcast registration will open March 9, 2015 on www.DietaryGuidelines.gov.

Those interested in providing oral testimony will be able to specify their request upon registration. Capacity for oral testimony is limited to 70 individuals with 10 on stand-by. Testimony participants will be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis. The meeting facility provides ample space for in-person attendance and live webcast viewing will be available. Oral testimony can only be given in-person.

Next Steps: HHS and USDA will use the Advisory Report along with input from federal agencies and public comments to develop the next edition of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. HHS and USDA will release the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2015 by end of the year.

Interested in more information on diet and nutrition? The U.S. Government Bookstore offers the following publications on diet, nutrition, and health.

About the author: Trudy Hawkins is Senior Marketing and Promotions Specialist in GPO’s Publication & Information Sales Division supporting the U.S. Government Online Bookstore (http://bookstore.gpo.gov).


Celebrating Fifty Years of Advancing Solutions to End Poverty

February 19, 2015

Congratulations to the AmeriCorps VISTA program, which is celebrating fifty years providing Volunteers in Service to America. Events will be held throughout 2015 to commemorate the anniversary.

History

In his 1963 State of the Union Address, President John F. Kennedy called for a national service corps to serve community needs. On August 20, 1964, President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Economic Opportunity Act of 1964 (Public Law 88-452), which established the Job Corp Program and fulfilled Kennedy’s vision to provide services in urban and rural poverty areas. On December 12, 1964 President Lyndon B. Johnson welcomed the first group of volunteers. Today, thousands of volunteers have participated in VISTA and other volunteer programs made possible by this legislation.

President Lyndon B. Johnson and Vista volunteers. Image courtesy of nationalservice.gov

President Lyndon B. Johnson and VISTA volunteers. Image courtesy of nationalservice.gov

The VISTA program has existed in several forms in the past fifty years. Senior service programs established in the 1960s included the Retired Senior Volunteer Program, Foster Grandparent Program, and Senior Companion Program. Those programs, the Peace Corps, and the VISTA program were combined in the 1970s into the Action Agency. VISTA existed under the Action Agency until it was combined with the Commission on National and Community Service to create the Corporation for National & Community Service (CNCS) in 1994. VISTA today operates as part of the AmeriCorps programs. The Peace Corps became an independent agency in 1981 and is not a part of CNCS today. A history of these programs is available on the CNCS website. Some Action Agency documents may be available in Federal depository libraries nationwide, such as the ACTION: agency for volunteer service. The May 2006 publication, “VISTA—in service to America,” which provides a forty year overview of the program’s history, is available online. Many photographs showing history and recent activity are also avaiable on the CNCS website.

Publications

vista_building_a_communityThere are several reports available online or in Federal depository libraries about the volunteer programs of the Corporation for National and Community Service.

Legislation

Since the 1964 act to establish the VISTA program, several pieces of legislation have been passed that expanded or impacted these programs. These include Public Law 91-177, signed in 1969 to continue programs authorized under the 1964 act. Public Law 92-424, in 1972, again appropriated funds and conintued the programs of the Economic Opportunity Act. A major act to affect the volunteer service corp was that National and Community Service Act of 1990 (Public Law 101-610). This legislation created the Commission on National and Community Service, which supported programs for school age youth, higher education service programs, Youth Corps, and other service models. The National Civilian Community Corps was created as part of the National and Community Service Trust Act of 1993. This legislation also created the Corporation for National and Community Service, which combined the Action Agency and the Commission on National and Community Service.

vista_volunteerPresident George W. Bush created the USA Freedom Corps by Executive Order 13254. This created a council to work across executive agencies to foster a culture of service by increasing public service opportunities. The most recent legislation was the 2009 Serve America Act (Public Law 111-13). This act, signed by President Barack Obama, reathorized and expanded national service programs administered by the Corporation for National and Community Service. Over the years, AmeriCorp and volunteers in these national programs have been recognized in official Congressional material for the achievements of the volunteers. For example, House Resolution 453 was recored in the Congressional Record on June 9, 2009.

50th Anniversary Celebration

AmeriCorp VISTA is celebrating it’s 50th anniversary kicking off in 2015 with a National Solutions Summit at the National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, DC on February 25th. The event may be attended in person, or some portions will be available for streaming online. In addition, Community Summit Spotlights will be held across the U.S. from April to December. Check out the celebration Web site for information about the events and how you can get involved.

National Service Timeline.  Image courtesy of nationalservice.org

National Service Timeline. Image courtesy of nationalservice.org

The thousands of members of the VISTA community are using social media to connect and share their experiences. Check out the #VISTA50 tag on Instagram and Twitter, and follow @VISTAbuzz. You can also follow the official blog of the Corporation for National and Community Service to keep up with news and events and opportunities to serve.

The Program Today

Today, the Federal Agency Corporation for National & Community Serivce continues to facilitate service to build community and combat poverty across the U.S. Established in 1993, the CNCS is active in every state and works collaboratively with national, state, and local entities. AmeriCorps VISTA volunteers continue to commit to the mission to bring individuals and communities out of poverty. Check out this interactive map to see what projects are going on near you. For example, since 1994, over 5,100 District of Columbia residents have served more than 7.3 million hours of community service. Many reports on projects and statistics on service are available for every state. You can also check out the agency Web site for more information if you are ready to serve.

Are you interested in volunteer services in America? The U.S. Government Bookstore offers a variety of publications that relate to this topic.

How can I get publications about Volunteer Services in America?

About the author: Cathy Wagner is an Outreach Librarian with the Outreach & Support team in the Library Services & Content Management (LSCM) unit at the Government Publishing Office.


Hispanic Americans in Congress 1822-2012 Free eBook

February 5, 2015

Hispanic Americans in Congress 1822-2012

Hispanic Americans in Congress 1822-2012 was initially reviewed in Government Book Talk, when it was released as a print publication. It has just been made available as a free eBook through the GPO Online  Bookstore, so we are revisiting our original blog.

The United States celebrates its history through monuments, parks, statues and more comprehensively through books. The latest book from the House of Representatives Office of the Historian Hispanic Americans in Congress 1822-2012 profiles Hispanic members of Congress, incorporating their government service with the history of United States expansion. This book joins existing publications Women in Congress and Black Americans in Congress in honoring minorities and their role in government. This hefty coffee table book does not make for light reading with more than 700 pages weighing seven pounds, but it is rich in content with history spanning nearly 200 years and three centuries.

Since 1899 at least one Hispanic American has served in each Congress. For much of the 19th century, Hispanic Americans served as Territorial Delegates whose native lands had been acquired by war or diplomacy from Spain or Mexico as a result of U.S. continental expansion. Territorial delegates had limited power and served more as lobbyists for their interests like infrastructure projects for roads and railways than as legislators. Following the Spanish-American War of 1898, the inclusion of Puerto Rico as a territory marked another increase in representation of Hispanic Americans in government. Since the first Territorial Delegate from Florida joined Congress in 1822, 91 Hispanic Americans have served in Congress and more than half, or 54, served after 1977.

The publication dedicates more pages to the past giving a detailed history of United States expansion and the inclusion of Hispanic Americans in Congress as Texas, New Mexico, California, Florida, Puerto Rico and other territories gained representation in government. Each member’s profile includes a picture, full-page pictures for former members, and standard biographical information with a greater focus on what they did while in Congress – the committees they served on, legislation they fought for and select anecdotes. The early history is more interesting as representatives overcame language barriers and fought for statehood for their territories. The appendices at the end of the book are a great resource organizing members by every imaginable category like the number of Hispanic Americans in Congress from each state, the committees they served on, the committees they chaired, the representatives in each Congress, and so on.

This book is a great read or scan because it takes vaguely familiar history and expands on it from the Hispanic American perspective, a unique viewpoint that those not from the Southwest may not be as familiar with. Regardless of perspective, the publication honors Hispanic Americans and the impact they have had on history and the growth and development of Congress.

HOW DO I OBTAIN THIS PUBLICATION?

Shop Online Anytime: You can buy this and other publications (with FREE Standard Shipping worldwide) from the U.S. Government Online Bookstore website at http://bookstore.gpo.gov:

Shop our Retail Store: Buy a copy of any print editions from this collection at GPO’s retail bookstore at 710 North Capitol Street NW, Washington, DC 20401, open Monday–Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., except Federal holidays, Call (202) 512-0132 for information or to arrange in-store pick-up.

Order by Phone: Call our Customer Contact Center Monday through Friday, 8 am to 5:30 pm Eastern (except US Federal holidays). From US and Canada, call toll-free 1.866.512.1800. DC or International customers call +1.202.512.1800.

Visit a Federal Depository Library: Search for these in a nearby Federal depository library.

About the author: Our guest blogger is Emma Wojtowicz, Public Relations Specialist in GPO’s Office of Public Affairs.

 


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